Monday, October 09, 2006

Stick out your tongue and say "huh?"

Duluth Minnesota is quite the medical town. People come here from all around to visit our hospitals, take in our testing facilities, and visit various bonesetters and shamans approved of by the AMA.

Now, being in this environment, I would think that it would not take, say, the coming of the Messiah to find a decent specialist who works with a decent clinic that is associated with a decent hospital that can answer a patient's phone call within three days. You would think that when you call your specialist's office and say that you are in extreme pain that they wouldn't call you three days later with a prescription that "takes up to 30 days to take effect" and then offer no other solutions for pain relief.

I firmly believe I am in an alternate universe. You know, where people hear the exact opposite of what you say...

When I call this same specialist's office and tell them about serious side effects that I am having from medications that they have prescribed and two days later they call me back and tell me that those side effects are not from the medication that they have prescribed which causes me to call the pharmacy and have them tell me that yes, those side effects can indeed be caused by this medication, I then come to the realization that I might as well drop my pants and scream up my own ass. It will accomplish the same thing.

How much am I paying for my healtcare a month? How much am I paying this doctor? Why is it that since my treatment isn't working, it is somehow my fault? Why do I have to be the insistant scrotum grabber with these specialists? What is so difficult about patient follow-up?

On another steller medical note, my husband's doctor didn't follow up with him after he got a cholesterol screening back that was very high and my husband has a family history of heart attacks. Many heart attacks. Of course, this is the same doctor that hasn't followed up on anything for the five years that my husband has been his patient.

All of this venting comes down to the question of what we are paying and what we are getting. I hear countries that have socialized health care complain about long wait times and outdated equipment but here, it is survival of the richest and fitest. If you are rich and never seriously ill, you'll do just fine...

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